Paramedic Nurses?

Specialties Emergency


Hi everybody,

I'm an LPN in Oklahoma, wanting to get my RN and work in an ER setting. I have almost all of my prereqs done to get into an RN program. I was thinking about taking a couple of years break from nursing school and get my associates degree as a paramedic. I like the thrill, being able to have another degree to fall back on, and I think it would help with being an ER RN. Are there any Paramedic RN's out there? Please let me know what your experiences are.

Thank you


133 Posts

Specializes in Emergency/Critical Care Transport.

I have been a Paramedic for nearly 25 yrs now and I went into nursing to have a broader range of choices. Though I keep a part-time medic job because it's a fun change and really nothing compares to it. I work for a single-provider system so it's just me and ambulance EMT's (I wouldn't suggest this for anyone straight outta paramedic school), so I'm kinda the Lone Ranger out there diagnosing and treating patients, so it's the autonomy that interests me the most. I am past the "trauma junkie" phase, I don't care if I ever go to another big wreck, fire, etc.

The drawback to being a medic is you're prettymuch stuck on the box, most EMS systems have limited career paths with not much room for growth. As an RN you're practically unlimited, theres Med/Surg, ICU, ED, Critical Care Transport,

Flight Team, heck just look at the list of forums on this board. Pay for RN's is a lot better too. I've visited other paramedic services around the country, and sadly there are guys doing that job for 14 to 17 thousand dollars a year. You can probably make that much at Burger King!

As for helping you in the ED, you can take care of critical patients with a much lower anxiety level. But I've found that though our destination is the same nursing takes a path from paramedicine to get there.

So yeah being a medic is a kick, but if you're taking classes get your RN first you can always go to paramedic school afterward, and you'll have something substantial to fall back on. Good luck!

Specializes in Emergency room, med/surg, UR/CSR.

I went from being a medic for 11 years to being an RN in the ER. I think being a medic made things come easier to me when I started working in the ER fresh out of nursing school.

I have a worked a few times on the ambulance since becoming an RN, but I don't knock myself out to work there. Besides, since the ambulance is part of the hospital, any time I would put in over at the ambulance would put me in OT so they don't really like me to work there anyway due to the money issues.

I don't really miss being on the ambulance and going out in the freezing cold, in the middle of the night to pick up some drunk off of a highway. I like the chaos of emergencies but I like it in a warm, safe, dry enviroment!:chuckle

I agree with whoever told you to go to nursing school first and then medic school if you're still interested. You can be done with your RN in the time it would take you to get through medic school. Depending on what state you live in, I think medic school is almost harder to pass than nursing school! Lots of medic candidates have to go back and retake their tests.:stone



Trauma Columnist

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN

97 Articles; 21,237 Posts

Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

I'm a pre-hospital RN which might be another option for you. I'm an RN who does EMS as a volunteer on my rural fire dept. Love it and its nice to help people too in a different way.

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